On the map: XO Condos at King and Dufferin are taking McDonald’s place

On the map: XO Condos at King and Dufferin are taking McDonald’s place

A pair of high-rises moving into South Parkdale are being designed with youthful residents in mind

Two mixed-use condominiums are coming to burger-and-fry central in Parkdale, a.k.a. the intersection of King and Dufferin, where the McDonald’s on the southwest corner dished out Big Macs for decades.

Demolished in early 2020, scaffolding is covering the site where a construction crew is preparing for the 14-storey, 307-unit XO Condos, scheduled for completion in 2023.

The rooftop terrace is “similar to what you’d see on Adelaide or Richmond,” says interior designer Melandro Quilatan. Lit stools “define the mood come sundown.”

A second tower, the 19-storey, 404-unit XO2, meanwhile is slated for the strip mall across the street on the northeast corner, where Burger King is still selling Whoppers, and a Quiznos also operates.

The smaller units at XO Condos have sold out; remaining inventory starts at $1-million for three-bedroom suites and penthouses, including two-storey penthouses dropping soon. Units are sized at more than 900 square feet and include parking, lockers and upgraded design features.

“It’s rare that you get an opportunity to change a major intersection in such a dramatic way,” says Brian Brown, vice-president of Lifetime Developments, who, along with Pinedale Properties, is behind the venture.

Brown adds that the intersection is a key “connection point for four different neighbourhoods — King West, Queen West, Liberty Village and Parkdale.”

The location is steps from mass transit, including the newly announced Ontario Line station — it’s a five-minute walk to the future King-Liberty SmartTrack Station, says Brown. The Gardiner Expressway and adjoining highways are also around the bend through the Dufferin Gate.

South Parkdale is similar to Liberty Village in 2004, says Brown. That was when Lifetime Developments acquired its first property there, the 300,000-square-foot Liberty Market Building at 171 Liberty St. E.

“At the time, Liberty was very much a neighbourhood in transition, and that’s what King and Dufferin is like right now,” says Brown. Liberty Village was once an industrial enclave where factories produced carpets and heavy machinery before its turn as a residential and retail hub.

“Aside from adding an architectural statement to both corners, both buildings will also have new retail at the ground level along King Street,” says Brown.

The kids’ zone is connected to an outdoor play area.

In Turner Fleischer Architects’ design plan for XO Condos, the historic bank on the site will remain intact; the 14-storey building will be set behind it, giving the heritage element prominence.

“The [condo’s] design is rooted in the spirit and character of downtown Toronto’s west end,” says Steve Nonis, principal of Turner Fleischer Architects. It features articulated precast concrete forms, “and the base building pays homage to pedestrian interactions with the building and expresses the importance of the retail and building entry,” says Nonis. Meanwhile, “the balconies on the upper storeys are recessed and projecting, creating an interesting interplay of shadow and light.”

Melandro Quilatan, principal of Tomas Pearce Interior Design Consulting, is finessing the interiors at both condos, which when completed, he says, will have distinct identities.

“This is our sixth development with Lifetime,” says Quilatan. “What I love about Lifetime is they have this uncanny ability to suss out pockets of the city to build vertical communities [in].”

Lifetime Developments’ midrise Oscar Residences, for example, is due to awaken a snoozy stretch of Dupont Street once it’s completed in 2024. And there’s RVER Condos, in the initial stages of planning, going in by the Don on the southeast corner of River and Dundas Street East.

“Liberty Village is dynamic and urban. King West is known for its restaurants and live theatre district. Queen West is about fashion and has a strong arts culture,” says Quilatan. “Those who find these community amenities attractive are our target demographic. Hip and urban and youthful are key words that played an important role in our design.”

The lobby inside the heritage bank, for example, “is useable and glamorous, not just for passing through.” Because the footprint is tight, Quilatan had to be clever to create punch: wooden arches highlight the lobby’s capaciousness, while a space-saving banquette has seating for a crowd.

“We want residents and guests to feel really comfortable sitting down on the elongated sofa with a laptop and a coffee, maybe conduct a little meeting there,” says Quilatan, who compares the white-walled space, with its “urban, edgy porcelain floors that mimic concrete” to an art gallery.

There are other nods to Parkdale’s reputation as an art hub. The reception features an “urban graffiti tunnel” by local street artist Daniel Bombardier, who goes by the name Denial. He also contributed a Lichtenstein-esque 50×20-foot pop-art mural for the condo’s sales office that will be rehung in an amenity space.

The lobby level also has a pet spa with a raised tub for big and little dogs and a parcel area with refrigerated storage for deliveries.

Tucked inside the heritage portion of the building that once housed a bank, the Tomas Pearce-designed lobby has wood arches and banquette seating.

Level two, though, is “outfitted for fun,” says Quilatan, of its 13,000 square feet of amenities. “Suites are well-appointed, but we want residents to view the amenities as an extension of their space.”

Parents can cart the kids to the children’s room with its desaturated primary colour scheme and stylish drywalled arches and play zones; it’s also connected to an outdoor play area. Then there’s a dedicated space for cardio, weight lifting, yoga and a dance studio, as well as a rounded Peloton spin room.

Level two’s hoopla continues in the multipurpose party room, in its kitchen designed to “look like a hip bar or a club, and space enough for both small and large gatherings,” says Quilatan.

The party room’s appliances are tucked behind matte-black base cabinetry; countertops are honed. LED artwork on the wall reads “Punch today in the face.”

Level two also has a flex space with sectionals and a video-gaming hub. The Think Tank, meanwhile, lets working-from-home residents take a breather from their suites. It’s equipped with a printer, copier, self-serve coffee station and various zones for social or quiet time — the window nooks are lovely. “It’s like a glamorous Starbucks,” laughs Quilatan.

Beyond is a stylish rooftop terrace “similar to what you’d see on Adelaide or Richmond with incredible LED-lit stools that define a mood come sundown,” says Quilatan. There’s lounge seating and architectural lighting on newel posts with cocktail ledges.

You can imagine a glass of chilled wine being consumed here. But a Happy Meal? That’s all in the past.

Suites start at $1-million for three-bedroom layouts and penthouses; two-storey penthouses are pending. The units are all 900 square feet and up, and include parking and lockers, as well as upgraded design features. For more information, visit xocondos.com.

Source: National Post

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